Spektral Quartet partners with MacArthur and Guggenheim fellow Miguel Zenón for an immersive, concert-length work inspired by the culture of Zenón’s native Puerto Rico. Premiered in September 2016 at the Hyde Park Jazz Festival, the work is an eight-movement suite that pairs lush, melodic string writing with complex rhythmic interactions, blurring the lines between jazz, classical, and folk musics. Though it outlines four of Puerto Rico’s musical traditions, “Yo Soy la Tradición” is much more than a collection of dances designed to get you moving: it is a heartfelt, insider-tour of a rich cultural landscape. 

“Like most countries in Latin America, music has a very special place in Puerto Rican everyday life. It oozes out of every street corner, it springs out of every conversation. Even the most basic human interactions seem to have some kind of musical cadence to it. Puerto Rican music is an integral part of who I am, and my ultimate goal as an artist would be to synthesize and express everything it means to me.”
— Miguel Zenón

About Miguel Zenón

Multiple Grammy Nominee and Guggenheim and MacArthur Fellow Miguel Zenón represents a select group of musicians who have masterfully balanced and blended the often-contradictory poles of innovation and tradition. Widely considered as one of the most groundbreaking and influential saxophonists of his generation, he has also developed a unique voice as a composer and as a conceptualist, concentrating his efforts on perfecting a fine mix between Latin American Folkloric Music and Jazz.